The Canon Young Champion of the Year Award will recognise those who have shown outstanding leadership in campaigning for a good cause around a social or environmental issue. The free-to-enter category will be made up of two classes – Under 16s and Under 21s – and photography/visual imagery is a key criterion.
Karen Sutton, CEO of the GGA, welcomed the partnership saying: “As a former professional photographer myself, I am delighted to have Canon on board for this brand-new category for 2020. Pictures play a key part in story telling these days – just look at the power of Instagram – and it will be fantastic to see how young people are using photography to champion their sustainability causes.”
“Young people around the world are driving environmental and social action and it’s crucial we support them in sharing their experiences,” said Emma Hope at Canon EMEA. “Using the universal language of images means their message can be understood by all, no matter how old they are or where they’re from. Our philosophy at Canon is Kyosei – living and working together for the common good – and we believe it’s important to empower the next generation of visual storytellers to help make a positive change.”
To enter, candidates will need to submit up to 1000 supporting words and up to 6 images to tell their story, that should be based on one (or more) of the Sustainability Development Goals (SDGs). “Whether it is mental health, cyberbullying, well-being, environmental sustainability, education, charity activism, animal welfare, diversity and inclusion, or any subject linked to the 17 SDGs, we want to hear how you are making people aware of the issue you are championing,” says Karen.
Judges will also consider applications from more than one candidate per entry, e.g. where siblings, friends or groups have worked together to champion change.
All finalists will receive two free tickets to the ceremony on 16th June 2020 in London and the winners will receive a Canon G7 X Mark III camera worth £700. Runners up will receive a Canon Zoemini C camera worth £150 while all the finalists will receive a bag of eco-friendly goodies and a framed certificate.
Canon will be promoting the award through its collaboration with the UN SDG Action Campaign and Karen is excited to welcome entries from across the globe but is keen to stress that, as a sustainability awards programme, GGA will be actively discouraging overseas travel to the ceremony. “We’ll be live streaming the ceremony – another first for 2020! – to help reduce our carbon footprint which we already offset through the World Land Trust.”
The category has been inspired by a number of incredible sustainability initiatives led by young people as part of a collaboration between Canon and the UN SDG Action Campaign. “Working closely with the UN on its SDG Action Campaign has helped us to give the younger generation a voice on sustainability,” explains Emma.
“When given space and the support to express their take on the Goals, young participants from across EMEA have identified an array of sustainability challenges and solutions that are culturally relevant to their own communities. The UN SDG Action Campaign and the Goals play a key role in enabling this, and we look forward to continuing our work with them.”
The Global Good Awards is also committed to the SDGs with a specific category dedicated to organisations that are addressing one or more of the SDGs relevant to its activities. “The judges look for evidence that the SDGs are being genuinely considered and used to guide sustainable development within the organisation, and not just used for ‘rainbow-washing,” emphasises Karen.
The GGA 2020 open for entries on 2 December 2019.
Picture: Canon, as part of its collaboration with the UN SDG Action Campaign, already supports a number of global sustainability initiatives led by young people; this includes for example work with Wild Shots Outreach programme in South Africa to educate underprivileged children in the art of wildlife photography and its impact on conservation.